Diabetes Epidemic – Time to Act
24th February 2009
A study has found that the prevalence of diabetes in the UK has soared dramatically in the last 10 years. The increase was due to a rise in type 2 diabetes - the kind that is linked with obesity. Type 1 diabetes remained ‘relatively constant’ throughout the study between 1996 and 2005. These figures are incredibly worrying, if not all together surprising - it’s long been reported that the incidence of diabetes is on the increase. However, we now have hard evidence that around 4% of the population are suffering from the condition which is the biggest risk factor in developing cardiovascular disease and implicated in many other serious health disorders. It’s about time the Government and the NHS start to take the obesity epidemic seriously and put plans in place to tackle the problem. And by this I don’t mean increasing the availability of statins or approving new anti-diabetes drugs – I mean dealing with the problem at its root rather than managing the symptoms. This means educating people about food, teaching children about good nutrition and encouraging people to cook for themselves. There is a serious need for health care professionals who are specialists in this area to be more widely available to the public. Doctors (and to some extent nurses) have to deal with many aspects of healthcare, and they do not have time or expertise to coach people in changing their lifestyles for the benefit of their long-term health – and this is the only way to beat this disease.